Dark Prospects For Dutch Casinos As Local Authorities Can Now Close Them

Article by : Eva Reed Aug 19, 2020

It looks like the coronavirus pandemic is far from the only problem for entertainment establishments in Holland. More recently, it became known that the Dutch municipal services have the right to close casinos legally.

Against the background of an increase in the incidence and a possible second wave of Covid-19, Prime Minister of the Netherlands Mark Rutte and Health Minister Hugo De Jonge announced very disappointing data. According to official information, government agencies have recorded more than 4,000 new cases of coronavirus infection in the past week. It means that the number of patients with Covid-19 has grown by more than 50%.

This situation immediately affected the casino operators, who had to witness new restrictions. For example, the largest operator Holland Casino is forced to impose limits on restaurants and bars. Visitors can now access them only by prior reservation.

Guests will also face some limitations like social distance. The Dutch Gambling Trade Association Van Kansspelen has stated that visitors and casino staff must keep a safe distance from each other. This is a top-priority measure that could limit the spread of the virus in public places.

The Association also believes that most of the new Covid-19 cases arise due to non-observance of a safe distance. While the government is desperately fighting the emergence of new cases of Covid-19, gambling establishments also have to focus on adhering to all precautions.

The casino and entertainment sector operates according to specific guidelines. Henceforth, the Dutch casinos should warn visitors to take precautions. It looks like the gambling industry will have to contribute to the fight against Covid-19.

After a hiatus caused by the coronavirus pandemic, casinos in the Netherlands are looking forward to visitors’ return. Previously, gambling operators were forced to close their doors, starting in mid-March. The fact that casinos could have opened as early as July 1 is a real breakthrough.

The government previously announced that gambling houses would remain closed until September 1. However, thanks to the efforts of the Dutch Gambling Trade Association, the authorities had to make concessions. The government allowed the gambling houses to restart several months earlier.

A Significant Update For The Gambling Sector Is Just Around The Corner

According to official information, the government has set out to update its policy on the gambling sector’s functioning. The regulator wants to create an entirely new licensing system for online gambling providers. These measures are necessary to reduce the overall level of gambling addiction, combat money laundering and illegal gambling operators. These actions will also focus on privatizing the largest operator, Holland Casino, and strengthening the national lottery position. It looks like it’s all over the bar shouting.

Redistribution Of The Casino Market

If the government privatizes Holland Casino, it would mean that the gambling market could change beyond recognition.

Now, this operator is the only legal gambling provider in the Netherlands. After possible privatization, 10 out of 14 gambling houses will continue their activities under the Holland Casino brand.

The remaining 4 casinos will be sold to private investors. The government also plans to issue 2 new licenses to diversify the gambling market. This policy will allow new operators to enter the Dutch market, and the total number of casinos will reach 16 brands.

Strengthening The Position Of Lotteries

There are various lotteries currently running in the Netherlands. Their regulation leaves much to be desired. The government has long-hatched plans to modernize this sector. It is already known that the regulator is developing a social, political, and legal basis for making the appropriate changes.

Eva Reed

Chief Editor

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